Take a look into the processes involved to bring you quality jewelry. From design to final inspection, here is a behind the scenes look at The Jewelry Exchange
All of our products start out here, as computer generated designs. The designers build 3D graphical representation of our new products before sending the design to our wax growing perfactory. We can also use the CAD system to make one-of-a-kind custom designs for our customers. Just bring in a drawing, picture or heirloom that you want reproduced, and tell us any changes you might want, and we will work with you to create the perfect design.
Once a design has been finalized by our CAD department, we send it to have a rubber mold created. This is an exact replica of the piece made of resin. Wax is injected into the rubber mold and set aside to harden. Once the wax pieces have been inspected for accuracy, they are placed on a “tree” with other pieces to be sent off for casting.
Our casting process has 2 steps. The first is the investment stage. The wax tree is placed in a casting cylinder. A plaster mixture is poured into the cylinder and left to harden. Once the plaster has hardened the cylinder is placed into an oven to heat the wax. The wax then melts out of the plaster, leaving a cavity inside.
The second stage is the gold stage. This involves melted gold being force inducted into the investment to fill in where the wax was. Once the gold has settled and cooled the plaster is broken and the tree (now gold) is removed. The pieces are removed from the tree and any imperfections are filled out. The final product from this stage is called a mounting.
After the pieces are polished they are sent to our prepping room. In this stage our experts sort diamonds and gemstones, select stones to be set in frames, and tag each item with an inventory number.
The frames with their matching stones are sent to our expert goldsmiths to be set. There are many different techniques that can be used to set diamonds and gemstones, and the type of frame generally determines the type of setting style used.
Once a product’s stones have been set the piece is sent to be polished. Polishing removed any tool marks or imperfections left behind after setting. It also gives the piece its final luster and shine. This is a 2 step process- Lapping and Roughing.
After a while, all jewelry looses some of its shine due to wear. Customers can bring their jewelry in to be inspected and cleaned professionally by us. Jewelry, once inspected to make sure there are no loose stones, broken or worn down prongs, or other problems, is placed in an ultrasonic bath when gentle pulses remove built up residue from the jewelry. It is then rinsed clean and steamed. For items that have several scratches or dings, polishing may be recommended.
Rhodium is a member of the gold family and is used to enhance the white finish on white gold pieces. All white gold pieces must be Rhodium dipped to maintain their bright white shine. The frequency of this process is determined by the wearer, and can be needed within a few months to a few years.
All of our pieces, once they have been polished, go through our quality control and distribution center. Items are inspected to make sure that the stones have been set properly and that all imperfections have been polished out of the frames. Then they are distributed to our showrooms across the country.
Is your ring too big or small? Did you lose a diamond or think one may be loose? Is the gold on your setting wearing thin? Our expert goldsmiths will gladly take in your jewelry and repair it back to its former glory. Most repairs, depending on the condition of the piece when we get it, are done on-site while you wait, and you can watch the magic happen.